It’s no secret that I am in a recovery program. I try to be very open and honest about my story because it could potentially help someone who is suffering. It also keeps me accountable if I’m acting squirrelly. (No, Janice isn’t on drugs, she’s just awkward.) Being a grateful, recovering alcoholic and addict has taught me many things about myself and has afforded me the opportunity of finding CrossFit.
I truly believe the parallels between my 12 step program and CrossFit are uncanny and both keep me on the right path. I’d like to share some of these nuggets of wisdom with you. Besides, who doesn’t like a useful, inspirational slogan?
- K.I.S.S: No, not the 70’s shock-rock band, but Keep It Simple, Stupid. Many of us can take an ordinary task and turn it into an IRS tax audit. The same holds true for me at the box. When we gather around the whiteboard to go over the skill and WOD, my brain immediately starts swirling with “How will I scale this? Should I scale? What if I can’t do a strict pull-up? I shouldn’t have worn shorts. Does this barbell make my butt look big?” It’s enough to make a person crazy. But that is the beauty of having highly skilled, extremely knowledgeable coaches to guide us. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and if you don’t quite understand, ask your fellow crossfit mates. There are many people at the box that have more crossfit time under their belts than I do and they’re just as willing to help.
- Don’t Leave Until The Miracle Happens: Let’s be honest, crossfit is no easy undertaking. It is a big commitment and can be quite daunting for newcomers. Sometimes it takes a while to see the weight come off our bodies and onto our barbells. Do not fear, newcomers! You will be surprised at how quickly some things come. For myself, it was a rope climb. I was only about 6 weeks into crossfit when I climbed my first rope. And I mean first-ever-in-life-in-40-years. It was certainly miraculous! I suggest setting reasonable goals and work towards them. Chip away slowly, keep track in a notebook or an app on your phone and soon you’ll be like “DAMN!! I… (fill in the blank)”
- Keep Coming Back: It’s easy to fall out of a routine for some of us. We get into a flow and then a sickness or injury strikes or life gets in the way. It’s easy to put off today what you can do tomorrow but, seriously, do it today. One of my favorite inspirational personalities I follow on Instagram is David Goggins because he talks about this sort of mentality a lot. We have to do this, we absolutely have to take care of our bodies by working them to keep them healthy. No amount “Mehhh, I’ll get to it next week…” will save your life or give you the results you’re looking for. Also, and this is my favorite part, your Crossfit homies miss you. They want you around as much you want to hang out with them. Our community is important for our body AND soul!
- Just Because The Monkey’s Off My Back Doesn’t Mean The Circus Left Town. Exercise is probably one of the most beneficial antidepressants and you don’t need a prescription. Doctors far and wide will tell patients to get some sort of daily exercise, get the heart pumping and get the body moving. Endorphins, serotonin, dopamine and other big words I’m not qualified to talk about surge when we workout and make us feel fantastic. When we lose that, we sorta lose our minds. At least I do! I get downright squirrelly when I don’t move my body. It’s like the energy I would have expelled at the box doing a WOD takes ahold of my brain and suddenly I’m anxious, paranoid and sad. Crossfit makes the icky things go away at least for a little while.
Well, I hope these little, helpful tips and slogans keep you on the right path to your fitness goals. It’s all about the journey, not the destination! And abs. It’s about abs too.